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I was interested in this machine but after reading this thread, am not so sure...
How bad is the smell? Does it stay on the stamp for long, or eventually outgas? I am pretty sensitive to chemicals so need to be careful.
Do you have to add adhesive each time you want to use the stamp? I am allergic to natural rubber/latex, so guess I need to find out what is in the adhesive as sometimes they contain latex. And can I use vinyl gloves instead of latex gloves when making the stamps?
I really only need to have a couple of stamps made (though I did think it would be fun to play with the machine)- anyone have recommendations for a company that could do a few photopolymer stamps? I am especially interested in some for Operation Write Home- they only offer rubber stamps now and I can't use them. They did provide a pdf download to print stickers but after making a card that looks really nice, I don't want to add a cheesy sticker. All thoughts & opinions appreciated as the cost of the Stampmaker is up to ~ $130 now.
I'm also sensitive to smells and have some skin allergies. The smell of the stamps is only there once you cut open the pack and clean it, once the stamp is made and hardened the smell goes away. I learned the hard way to use gloves when making my stamps, not only is it messy but the gel gave me a bit of a rash, as long as I use rubber gloves though I have no problems.
It's pretty expensive to have just one or two stamps produced, especially with graphics. If you're wanting just words though lots of shops on Etsy make custom stamps, you might want to search there.
I would imagine vinyl gloves are fine. The point of the gloves is just to keep the polymer off your skin if you're sensitive to it. I don't wear gloves at all and it doesn't bother me. The smell, also, isn't very strong in my opinion. I've never had it bother me. The stamps retain the smell for a little while, but it seems to dissipate once they've been in open air for a while. I have had a customer or two mention they smelled like polymer when they first came out of their envelope - but out of thousands of orders, I haven't had more than maybe two mentions of it. It's really not a big deal. If you're just looking to have a couple stamps made, it may not be worth the investment. There's definitely a learning curve, so you might find it frustrating. There are companies out there that will make polymer stamps for you at reasonable prices.
We shouldn't confuse the 2 machines - with imagebox you first make a floor to the stamp. If imagebox stamps are distorted, polymer is flowing. After flipping the clamp over for the 2nd exposure, try leaving it to settle for a few seconds before putting under the light. As always, if you have any questions, you should always contact Photocentric for advice. Thanks.
Polymer: The gel is non toxic but it can be sticky. Gloves are a good idea. Do also use plenty of warm water and dish soap - washing in cold water or without dish soap will be much stickier!
Adhesive: Someone asked about tape to attach Stampmaker stamps to a block. If you have tape in the kit, do apply this to the block, not your stamp. The latest kits have a "cling" film instead of tape which is much easier to place on the block and stamps will cling to it and are easy to remove and store. The cling is also available for purchase on its own at $1.99 for 2 pieces - they can be reused indefinitely.
If anyone reading this forum has any questions about making a stamp, please pick up the phone and talk to Photocentric or email them. Also check www.teresacollinsstampmaker.com for videos.
Last edited by SallyB99; 08-30-2011 at 02:17 PM..
Reason: Add more info.
Just picked one of these up at the flea market brand new for $40. Was excited, but am having the hardest time getting it right. I tried four times without a perfect stamp.
Here's what I've figured out. For the negatives, I can cut the letter sized sheet into three 4x6 to print, saving me from wasting any.
I think the gel packs that came with the machine had been sitting, because there are creases in the large ones, which is responsible for two bad stamps. (not flat when done). The issues with my smaller stamps are design related, I think. Too finely detailed.
I think it's going to work, I just think I'm going to need new gels. Ah well, sure happy I only paid $40 new and not the $150 it costs online!
Would love to hear tips from anyone else who uses theirs successfully.
I saw you are talking about the Stampmaker and can answer any questions you have about it.
I am the design and education manager-saw someone has already posted my other comments.
The TC stampmaker is our new kit/system that retails for 169.99 it includes the light and polymer to make stamps, stencils and embossing dies all in one package. It is an amazing system and really requires little more than reading the directions.
We have a large UV light unit that is about 400.00 USD called the Imagebox.
The Stamp it kit is our daylight polymer system.
JustRite used to distribute our products as Photocentric is based in the UK but we now have an office/warehouse in Phoenix, AZ
Please contact me regarding any product support questions
Can you please tell me what's involved in creating your own negatives?